The Legendary Swordsmanship School “Chujo-ryu”02

New trends started from “Chujyo-ryu"

“Chujyo Nagahide" created the swordsmanship school “Chujo-ryu", which was handed down to “Kai Hirokage", a servant of the influential “Shiba family" in Echizen Province (now Fukui Prefecture). Since then, “Chujo-ryu" has been widely practiced in the Hokuriku region.

Even after the ruler of Echizen Province changed to the Asakura family, “Chujo-ryu" continued to develop. This style was passed down to “Ohashi Takayoshi", “Toda Nagaie" and “Toda Kagemasa".

Toda Kagemasa from Bugei Hyakunin Issyu. “Bugei Hyakunin Isshu" is a card of masters of swordsmanship made in the Edo period.

Another name “Toda-ryu" and. And from this style came many schools.

“Toda Nagaie" and “Toda Kagemasa" were grandfather and grandson. They were excellent masters, and “Cyujo-ryu" developed under them. One of there achievements was the creation of the excellent Kodachi (short sword) techniques. Since then, the Kodachi has become one of the characteristics of the Cyujo school.

However, ”Toda family", who were swordsman during the civil war, had more than just the Kodachi. According to the Toda family swordsmanship documents that still exist today, the length of the wooden sword used for training is 93 cm for the attacking side. The length of the defender’s wooden sword against this is 69 cm. From this, we can see that the Cyujo school thinking of fighting an enemy equipped with a long sword. It is exactly swordsmanship for soldiers fighting on the battlefield.

Another of Toda family was that he and his apprentices passed on the techniques to many talented apprentices. From Toda family’s clan, “Toda Shigemasa", “Toda Seigen", “Toda Ippou", “Hasegawa Souki ", “Kanemaki Jisai" and “Ito Kagehisa" came out into the world.

They were all masters of their own style of swordsmanship. Among them, three were particularly important.

“Toda Shigemasa" was not only a master of swordsmanship, but also a very strong Samurai captain. He was a senior vassal of “Maeda Toshiie", a famous military commander during the Warring States period. He was the Maeda family’s guard captain and combat instructor. He won many battles during the Sengoku period, and was feared as the “Meijin Echigo".

”Toda Seigen” was the older brother of ”Toda Kagemasa”. Although he was blind, he was a master of fighting with the Kodachi. His skill was excellent, and he once defeated a mighty foe with a short wood. In Legend, One of his disciples was the master of Miyamoto Musashi’s rival Sasaki Kojiro. Due to the excellence of his technique, the Cyujo style handed down in the Toda family came to be called the Toda style.

Toda Seigen from Bugei Hyakunin Issyu. “Bugei Hyakunin Isshu" is a card of masters of swordsmanship made in the Edo period.

And Kanemaki Jisai’s disciple “Ito Kagehisa" was also the swordsman master. His other name was “Ittosai". Yes, he was the founder of “Itto-ryu" which had a great influence on all Japanese swordsmanship and Kendo.

Kanemaki Jisai ,Ittosai’s swordsmanship teacher. from Bugei Hyakunin Issyu. “Bugei Hyakunin Isshu" is a card of masters of swordsmanship made in the Edo period.

“Itto-ryu" is the origin of one of the major factions of Japanese swordsmanship, which continues to “Ono-ha Itto-ryu" , “Hokushin Itto-ryu" and many others. And the root of the “Itto-ryu" was the “Cyujo-ryu". This fact alone shows how important the Cyujo and Toda families played in the world of Japanese swordsmanship.